The world of lettings is full of jargon, but we don’t play like the others; whether you are an experienced landlord or a first-time tenant, we like to communicate in an open, honest and straightforward way – avoiding jargon where we can. From time to time there may be a letting term that needs a little more explaining and that’s why we’ve put this jargon buster together.

Additional HMO Licence

These are additional licensing schemes that apply to specific areas of the city. We have a dedicated HMO Compliance and Licensing expert that can provide help and advice if you are thinking about turning your property into an HMO. Find out more >

ARLA Propertymark Accredited

Members of ARLA Propertymark are choosing to be regulated in an unregulated market, providing reassurance to landlords and tenants alike. The Letting Game is included in their Client Money Protection scheme that reimburses landlords and tenants should an agent illegally use their rent, deposit or other client funds.


Outstanding rent owed by a tenant.

Assured Shorthold Tenancy (AST)

This is the default legal category for residential tenancy in England and Wales, for properties where rent is below £100,000 a year.

Client Money Protection Insurance (CMP)

The Letting Game is part of a scheme that reimburses landlords and tenants should a letting agent misappropriate (illegally use) their rent, deposit or other client funds.

Deposit Protection

It is a legal requirement that landlords protect their tenant’s deposit. A deposit protection scheme is a government-approved safeguard for a tenant’s deposit.

Electrical Installation Conditions Report (EICR)

Private landlords must make sure all electrical installations in their properties are inspected and tested every 5 years

Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)

All rental properties in England and Wales must have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) with a minimum rating of E before the property is let. This is a certificate that provides a rating for the property’s energy efficiency, running costs and carbon emission impact.

Fixtures and Fittings

The contents of a rented property that may include window dressings, light fittings, carpets, fixed kitchen units, worktops and appliances – some rental properties also come furnished.

Fully Managed/Management (service plan)

Our Full Management Plan is the no-hassle way for landlords to have their properties and tenants managed for them. They will have peace of mind, knowing all management issues are dealt with professionally by us. Click here for more details.


This is someone who agrees to pay the rent if the tenant doesn’t pay it. A guarantor is sometimes required in order to secure a property. A guarantor is someone who agrees to sign the tenancy agreement and in effect guarantees that they will undertake the full obligations under the tenancy agreement on the tenant’s behalf. If for some reason the tenant cannot pay the rent, the guarantor will make the payments.

HMO (House in Multiple Occupation)

This is a property that is rented out by three or more people who are from separate households but share facilities like a bathroom and kitchen. If you want to rent out your house as an HMO then there are a number of considerations. Find out more>

HMO Licence

A property is subject to additional licensing requirements dependending on the number of people you have living there. We have a dedicated HMO Compliance and Licensing expert that can help provide help and advice if you are thinking about turning your property into an HMO. Find out more>

Holding Deposit

A deposit for new tenants (equivalent to one week’s rent) to secure the property once an offer to the landlord has been accepted. If all goes through this comes off the first month’s rent. See tenant’s fees for more information.


A list of all the contents within the property, this can also include the condition of the fixtures and fittings. This is provided at the start of a tenancy as part of the check-in process and would be used to assess the condition of the property at the end of the tenancy.

Selective Licence

Selective licensing applies to non-HMO properties in areas of the city where Bristol City Council have declared selective licensing schemes.

Notice Period

How much time the tenant or landlord must give to end the tenancy agreement.

Portable Appliance Test (PAT)

Portable Appliance Test (PAT) is the inspection of electrical equipment to identify defects in order to ensure that they are safe to use.

Periodic Tenancy

A tenancy that runs for a certain period of time, most commonly month to month. Unlike fixed-term tenancies, periodic tenancies work as a rolling contract which can be terminated by the landlord or tenant by giving notice.

Prescribed Information

Prescribed Information is a specific set of information relating to a tenancy, which you’re legally obliged to provide to your tenants. You must serve your tenants with the Prescribed Information within 30 days of the agent/landlord receiving the deposit.


Once a new tenant has paid their holding deposit we’ll begin reference checks, for example, employer, current landlord and credit history. All these checks help to assess the tenant’s suitability to rent the property.


If the tenant and landlord agree to renew the tenancy for a new fixed term. Landlords may also ask a tenant to sign a new tenancy agreement if they want to change and terms of the existing agreement.

Rent Recovery Insurance

Rent Recovery Insurance provides reassurance that your rental income will be protected until vacant possession is obtained. Click here for more details.

Rental Valuation

This is a valuation undertaken by one of our dedicated expert Valuers to find out how much rent you could get for your property. Book a free rental valuation>

Right to Rent Check

We are required, by law, to check that every prospective tenant has a right to rent in England. This will include obtaining the necessary documents and making copies in the tenant’s presence. Click here for more details.

Section 13 notice

This is a notice served by the landlord formally informing the tenants of a rent increase. This can only be served once every 52 weeks and not within the first 12 months of a contractual tenancy.

Section 21 notice

This is a notice served by the landlord that starts the process of ending a tenancy and regaining possession of their property. Landlords have the right to issue a Section 21 notice without reason, providing the tenancy has passed the fixed term.

Security Deposit

A deposit paid by new tenants upfront to cover any damage to the property or missing inventory items. This is held until the end of a tenancy where any damage will be deducted. See tenant’s fees for more information.

Statutory Obligations

Requirements and obligations of the landlord as set out by Acts of Parliament – a good letting agent like ourselves can help a landlord with these as part of the service.


When an existing tenant lets all or part of their home to someone else, this is known as subletting. Your tenancy agreement may say that you are not allowed to sublet or may state that you need permission from your landlord before subletting. If you sublet your property without permission your landlord may take legal action against you.

Tenancy Agreement

A tenancy agreement is agreed upon and signed before a property is let out. It’s a contract between a landlord and a tenant(s) that sets out the terms and conditions of the rental agreement.

Vacant Possession

The property is empty of both residents and belongings with exception of those contractually agreed to be in the property.

Related Post